MUSCAT, NOV 5
Omantel Group, of which the most is owned by the Omani government, reported revenue totalling RO1.859 billion for the nine months ended September 30, 2020, down 2 per cent from the corresponding tally of RO 1.893 billion for the corresponding period of 2019.
Announcing its unaudited financial results for the period, the Group posted a profit of RO 167.7 million this year, down from RO 198.3 million, representing a drop of 15 per cent. EBITDA at RO 758.3 million was lower by 7 per cent compared to last year.
Omantel’s domestic operations witnessed a 6 per cent decline in net profit to RO 56 million during the first nine months of the year. It explained: “Domestic operation results have been resilient considering the serious business disruptions witnessed since March 2020 resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Proactive cost optimisation measures taken by the management have positively contributed in minimising the overall impact by achieving a 6 per cent reduction in operating and administrative expenses y-on-y.” Revenue for the period grew 3 per cent to RO 410.1 million up from RO 396.3 million last year. The uptick mainly came from an increase in the wholesale international business and device revenues, which are typically of low margin compared to the core revenues, it said.
Core revenues dipped to RO 328.2 million this year compare to RO 345.4 million in 2019, representing a decrease of 5 per cent, which impacted overall margins, said Omantel. Improvement in Q3 – 2020 margins is attributed to a one-off capacity sale from international business, it stated.
Omantel subsidiary Zain Group contributed RO 150.3 million to the net profit (before non-controlling interest) of Omantel Group compared to RO 179.6 million in 2019, entailing a decline of 16.3 per cent. After adjusting for non-controlling interest, Zain Group contributed RO 28.9 million in H1-2020 compared to RO 33.8 million in 2019.
Interest costs incurred by Omantel Group relating to Zain’s acquisition was RO 39.2 million in 2020 (versus RO 39.3 million in 2019) and is accounted at the Omantel Group level and is not part of the domestic performance, it added.